How Does a Boiler Work?

In Toronto, boilers have served for over a century keeping us warm during the cold season. There’s a good reason for their longevity: boilers provide even and effective levels of heat, develop few maintenance issues, and cost less to install than many other types of heaters.

However, aside from knowing that “boilers use hot water,” most homeowners don’t have a solid idea of how a boiler goes about performing its vital function. (Here’s a surprise: modern boilers almost never “boil” anything!) If you know the basics of boiler operation, you’ll have a better idea of when one will need repairs and maintenance. If you are thinking of installing a boiler, this information will give you a better idea if it’s a good fit for your home. Please remember that this bit of knowledge won’t make you a qualified HVAC technician. You’ll still need expert help to fix a malfunctioning boiler.

The boiler repair professionals at Advantage Airtech are ready to help you with around-the-clock, around-the-calendar service.

Lets Talk Boiler 101

A boiler consists of a tank of water which is heated. Boilers used to turn the water into steam through boiling (which is where they originally got their name), but most of today’s boilers instead use hot water, which is more energy efficient and less prone to breakdown. A pump then moves the hot water through pipes to an end point—radiators, baseboard heaters—where it radiates heat into a room, raising the temperature. This is different from a furnace, which uses forced heated air blown through ducts. The cooled water returns to the boiler, where the process begins again.

Boilers use different sources of fuel to heat the water in their tanks: the most common in today’s homes are electricity and natural gas. Electric boilers use heating elements inside the tank itself to raise the water temperature. Gas boilers have a pilot light to ignite gas jets in a combustion chamber to transfer heat to the water in the tank. Of the two types, natural gas is more favored because gas cost less to use.

If you are in the market for a heating system, boilers offer great advantages. However, they may not be the right choice for your home, so get expert consultation before you proceed any further.

Whether you have a boiler that needs repairs, or you want professional boiler installation, get the Toronto boiler experts on the job: Advantage Airtech!